Friday, September 30, 2011 at 10:59 a.m.
Josef and Beth Shibanetz have found a new location for Josef's, the former Plantation restaurant that will debut in Boca Raton as Josef's Table.
The restaurant had earned the chef-owners accolades in the Miami Herald as a Broward top 20 restaurant and a Best Of in this paper in 2008 during toughest of economic times. The Shibanetzes, who have asserted they're on track for a November 15 opening, had been searching for a
new space for several months, closing Josef's once the lease had been signed at 5030 Champion Blvd.
Despite the dressing down of fine dining that's infiltrated every major market around the country, Josef's Table will adhere to a white-tablecloth aesthetic, said Krista McCracken, the restaurant's general manager, with a pedigree that includes a tenure as sommelier of Chez Philippe in the Memphis Peabody Hotel. The price of entrées ranges from $26 to $42, significantly steeper than most restaurants. Perhaps the chef's trail of accolades and a relocation to this tony 'burb will reel in a crowd.
"There is nothing like us here," McCracken said in a phone interview yesterday, the second time Clean Plate Charlie has heard this assertion this week and one of many times this summer. Perhaps South Florida restaurateurs really are delivering a more diverse selection of dining concepts in the coming season (or maybe the PR collective could hone its pitches).
Josef's Table diverges from the restaurant's original concept in that it's less Italian-focused as it moves toward what the restaurateur is calling "Euro-Fusion." Gail Shepherd, former New Times critic, dubbed the original Josef's an "Austro-Italian" restaurant, citing Greek and Turkish influences on the menu as well.
What to expect? Fine-dining renditions of goulash, veal bratwurst, and blintzes will hold spots on the menu. And, "We'll be doing Dover sole tableside," said McCracken, in reference to the flourish of filleting a fish in front of diners. Clean Plate Charlie will provide updates on the progress of Josef's Table once the chef returns from travels abroad.
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